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Full text of "Linguistic Survey Of India Vol Ii Mon Khmer Siamese Chinese Families"

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Mir Juxnla. gl&d to patch up a peace, which he did, and retreated rapidly to Bengal, where he died shortly
afterwards. The Ahoms then again took Gauhati, and made the Koch kings of Mangaldai and Beltola
their tributaries. They defeated another Musalman army led by Raja Ram Singh, and extended their
boundary to the Monass. The Ahoms were then at the height of their power; all the minor rulers of the
eoantry acknowledged their supremacy, and even the Daflas, Miris, and other hill tribes desisted from.
jaidiug on their subjects. But even then the decline was at hand. They had for some time hankered after
ffiaduiflm, and the Bajas had for years been in the habit of taking a Hindu as well as a Shan name Even-
tually Eudra Singh, ahas Chnknuigpha, who became king in 1695, resolved to make a public piofession of
Hiaduism. He was too proud to become the disciple of a subject, and so sent for Krishna-ram Bhattacharjya,
a S&kta Gosani of NadiS The Gosam came, but the Ra]3. hesitated to take the final step, and died in 1714
wMle still unconverted, His son Sib Singh succeeded him, and became a disciple of Krishna-iam, who was
aMowsd to occupy the temple of Kamakhya. In his reign the seeds of future dissension were sown by the
persecution of the Moamanas, while the pride of race, which had hitherto sustained the Ahoms, began to dis-
appear, and those who had failed to embrace Hinduism were looked upon as a separate and lower class, instead
of being respected as members of the ruling tribe. At the same time, their habits began to change, and " instead
of being like barbarians but mighty Kshattriyas, they became, like Brahmans, poweiful m talk only." Pa-
triotic feeling soon disappeared, and the country was filled with dissensions, chief amongst which was the
rebellion of the Moamarias, which was followed by the revolt of the Koch kings of Dariang. Captain Welsh
was deputed by Lord Cornwallis to help the King Gauri-nath Singh, Tvho was then being besieged at Ganhati,
and with his aid he was once more freed from his enemies. At this juncture, Sir John Shore succeeded to the
Governor-Generalship, and oae of his first acfca was to recall Welsh (1794 A.D.) after whose departure the
country was given again over to aaarchy. The aid of the Burmese was then invoked (1816 A.D) and the
latter remained m the country until 1824, when they were driven out by our troops, and the country was

The Ahoms have left at least two Important legacies to Assam, the sense of the
importance of history, and the system of administration. The former will be briefly
dealt with when I treat of the literatures of the Tai languages. I base the following
account of the system of Ahom administration on what we are told in the Imperial
Gazetteer of India,

It was not the soil, so much as the cultivators of the soil, that were regarded as
the property of the Ahom State. The entire scheme of administration was based upon
the obligation of personal service, due from every individual Each male inhabitant
above the age of sixteen years was denominated a pdik, and was enlisted as a member of
a vast army of public servants, Tnree pdite made up a got, and one <»« from each aot
was, m theory, always on duty. A larger division, called a ktel, consisted of twenty aots
at the head of which was a Mm. Over each hundred gots was a scdkya and over each
thousand gots a terL The whole population, thus classified into regiments and
brigades, was ready to take the field on the shortest notice. But this system was not onlv
i^ed for military purposes; it supplied also the machinery by *hich public works *«£
conducted, and the revenue raised. Every pM was liable to render personal serrice to
the ftq., or to pay apoll-taxif his attendance wasnot retired. The Ahom princes were
efficient administrators but hard taskmasters. It was by the fM organization that Ih !
we e able to repel the Muhammadan invaders, and to construct those great public works
still scattered throughout the Province in the form of embankments and tanks. BuT he
memory of this system of forced labour has sunk so deep into the minds of the

'       r                          it very difficult to attract labor

The change of the speech of the Adorns into Assamese can be very

er   hom copper-plate kscriptions were in the Ahom language tt
appear tt a biglot form, and finally in Assamese or Sanskrit. " When